Refuge a safe haven for Aboriginal women
By JANE GARDNER
DOROTHY GORDON wants Aboriginal women in the Lismore area to feel they have a safe, supportive place to go if they've been abused.
Along with 16 other welfare workers, Ms Gordon has introduced a new service to do just that.
The new management committee for the Yinganeh Aboriginal Women's Refuge hopes to bring together Aboriginal women from all walks of life by joining forces with other local women's rights groups.
"We're striving to empower women to fight against drugs and alcohol, violence and abuse," Ms Gordon, the chairwoman, said.
"We want to develop a safer community for women where they can stay and be welcome."
The new management of the Yinganeh Aboriginal Women's Refuge will work closely with the Lismore Women's and Children's Refuge, Women Up North and the Department of Community Services in Lismore and Ballina.
The Aboriginal Women's Refuge also offers emergency assistance for victims of domestic violence.
They provide skilled welfare workers, health workers, a woman doctor and teach parenting and budgeting skills that will help out in everyday life.
"It's about improving the quality of life for Aboriginal women in the Lismore area," Ms Gordon said.
For more information, or if you are a woman in need, call the Yinganeh Aboriginal Ref- uge on 6621 5187.